Camping Safety Tips

No doubt about it, camping can be fun.  But, if you don’t pay attention to safety, your fun camping outing can turn into the camping trip from Hell.  What are some of the most important camping safety tips you should know?

1.  Plan Ahead.   Do your research.  Make sure the campground you’ve chosen is a safe one.  Make sure there are no current fire dangers.  Check out the weather.  Any health alerts in the area, such as dangerous bacteria count in the water, or outbreak of any rodent-carrying viruses?

2.  Pack the Emergency Kit.  Be prepared for cuts, bee stings and allergic reactions. Bring antihistamines, antiseptic, bug sprays and insect repellents, pain relievers, bandages, sunscreen and if possible, a snake-bite kit.

An emergency kit should also include the following items:  Whistle, flashlight, compass, a small Swiss Army knife, razor blades, tweezers, magnifying glass, sterilized water packets for cleaning wounds, emergency blanket, thermometer, cold pack, and a mirror.  A mirror can be helpful when signaling for help.  Some people also use a CD.  If you can afford them, a pair of night-vision goggles can also be a help in an emergency.

3.  Arrive at the Campsite Early.  Arriving early, with ample daylight, allows you to examine the entire campsite and set up while there’s still light.  Be on the lookout for sharp objects, broken glass, huge ant beds, branches, poison ivy, hazardous terrain and bees.

4.  Set up your Tent on a Safe Spot.  Make sure your tent is flame-resistant and keep it at a safe distance from the campfire.  Try to pitch your tent on elevated land so it doesn’t flood in case of rain.  In order to keep the bugs out, make sure you close your tent immediately upon entering and leaving.

5.  Go Over Safety Issues with Family Members. Make sure family members are aware of poisonous plants in the area.  Be sure the children understand that they should never drink from any stream or river, regardless of how clean it may look.  Finally, issue each member of your family a whistle for emergency use only.

6.  Be Fire Safe.  Make sure there are no current fire restrictions before building any fire, and don’t build a fire if there are strong winds.  When you do build a fire, keep it in the fire ring, and make sure there are no flammable items near the fire.  Do not use heating devices or candles inside the tent.

Never leave your campfire unattended, and keep the area clear of leaves and twigs.  Before going to bed, make sure the campfire is property put out by drowning it with water.

7.  Be Aware of Wild Animals.  Be sure to familiarize yourself and your family with safety concerning wild animals.  Wild animals have acute senses of smell.  Make sure you keep your campsite clean and free of food or garbage which might attract them.  It is best to store all food, garbage and strong-smelling items (such as soap or toothpaste) in bear-resistant containers or your vehicle.   Keep your sleeping bag and tent completely free of food and food odors, and set up your cooking and eating area at least 100 yards from your tent.  Do not go to sleep in the same clothing you cooked in, as even the cooking smells can attract bears and other wild animals.

While it may seem like attention to safety takes the fun out of camping, in reality it helps ensure that your camping vacation is a fun time for the whole family.  And, isn’t having fun the point of camping?

Dutch Oven Camping

Camping presents an opportunity to try new things and have new experiences.  Many people who go camping rely on hot dogs or freeze dried food for meals.  It seems that camping is synonymous with bad food.  However, there is a way to eat great, even gourmet, food while camping and it’s through a Dutch oven.

Dutch ovens are simply a type of cast iron pot that is used while camping to cook.  You can use them over an open flame hanging from a tripod, but the most common use is to bury them in hot coals.  This makes the food cook evenly. You can also use them on specially made tables that make them more like a grill.  You can cook pretty much anything in a Dutch oven.  It is a great way to make your favorite homemade dishes while out camping.  One of the most popular Dutch oven dishes is cobbler.  Dutch ovens are absolutely perfect for cobbler and the whole family will love it.

It is important to take good care of your Dutch oven while camping and prior to leaving.  Cast iron is very susceptible to rust, so you’ll want to season it before you leave home.  You’ll want to avoid soap when cleaning it because that will breakdown the protective barrier in the Dutch oven that helps to prevent rust.  There are also aluminum Dutch ovens now that you can use when camping.  These are easier to care for and a lot lighter which is making them gain popularity with camping crowds.  However, cooking in them will be different because they heat faster and lose heat faster.

If you do decide to go with an aluminum Dutch oven for your camping trip, try and pick recipes that were written for the aluminum variety.  Also, it is easier to burn food when cooking with the aluminum Dutch ovens.  This is important because it is easy to get distracted while camping and burn the food.  Nothing ruins a camping trip faster than burnt food; you most likely won’t bring enough to make another meal like you could at home, so you’ll just have to tough it out.

If you plan your meals before leaving to go camping, you can eat like a king with the help of your Dutch oven.  Find Dutch oven recipes online for all your favorite dishes and maybe even try a few new things.  It’s not uncommon for some families to have better food while camping than while at home thanks to the Dutch oven.  Make sure you bring enough ingredients to make everything you want.  You’ll also want to bring some easy backup food in case anything goes wrong with your Dutch oven cooking.  Be sure to keep track of how many briquettes each recipe calls for, you want to make sure you have enough with you to cook all the dishes you want at the same time.

You’ll also need to bring all the accessories you’ll need for your Dutch oven with you on your camping trip.  You’ll need thick gloves, wooden spoons, metal tongs, and a lid lifter.  If it is your first time using a Dutch oven then you might want to even have a trial run at home before you go on your camping trip.  With a little practice Dutch oven cooking can really add a tasty touch to your family’s next camping excursion.

“Your Ultimate Guide To Family Camping”- All About Camping!

Find out everything you need to know to turn this into the best family vacation you have ever had. You do not need a lot. Take a look at what we divulge in Your Ultimate Guide to Family Camping: What is your camping style – Yep there is a difference. Summer, Winter, Spring or Fall. How to pick the best tent. How to pick the best backpack. How to pick the best sleeping bag. Dressing for the occasion. Campfires and setting up camp. All About Gourmet Camping Food, Just kidding – general food basics. Fun Activities While Camping. Play it Safe – Packing a First Aid Kit. Staying in Touch. Getting There Can Be Fun. Keeping Kids Happy. Destination Suggestions. 10 Fun Things for Kids To Do. What About Fido? Written in plain English, Your Ultimate Gu

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Camping Safety

There are millions of people everywhere who enjoy the relaxation of camping. Whether you’re spending the weekend camping with your family at the local state park or backpacking through the backcountry, there are some general rules of camping safety that you should always follow. Many of these camping safety tips are simply common sense, but it is still a good idea to review these guidelines before setting out for any type of outdoor adventure.

General Camping Safety
Camping safety begins before you ever set out on your vacation. Check the weather forecast ahead of time and be prepared for rain or storms. Pack emergency rain gear, as well as a well-stocked first aid kit, and plan to arrive at your campsite as early as possible. You want plenty of time to set up camp before the sun sets.

Upon arrival, inspect your campsite closely for glass and harmful debris, poisonous plants and animals, and areas that may be prone to flooding in the case of a heavy downpour. Set up your tent on flat ground and remove any rocks, branches, or other objects that could damage your tent or be uncomfortable to sleep on.

If you are camping with children, check the campsite closely for fire ants, hornet or wasp nests, dangerous grades, and other potential hazards before settling in. Wear light colors and refrain from using scented lotions, soaps, and perfumes to prevent attracting bees and mosquitoes. Coleman citronella candles can ward off mosquitoes as well.

Use caution whenever you operate your propane stove or grill and anytime you have a campfire. Never leave any of these unattended. Keep your campsite clean, storing food in closed containers and disposing of garbage, to reduce the chances of bears, raccoons, or other wild animals entering your campsite. Never keep food items inside your tent.

Hiking and Outdoor Activity Safety
Anytime you decide to enjoy the great outdoors, it is important to remember that you are in nature’s domain. To stay safe, it is your responsibility to follow the proper safety precautions. It is a good idea to become familiar with poisonous and harmful plants, animals, and insects that are common to your area. Always carry a small first aid kit while hiking or biking and have knowledge of first aid procedures for outdoors. If you should come in contact with poison ivy or sumac, apply calamine lotion to the infected area to relieve the itching.

Stay on the designated trail and avoid high grass and overgrowth. Wear light colors so ticks are easy to spot and check your head and body for any possible ticks each night. If you find a tick that has already bitten, remove it gently with tweezers, taking care not to crush the body or leave the head. Clean the bite area with warm water and soap and see a doctor if you experience a fever or rash within the next few days or if you think the tick was attached for more than 2 days.

Never enjoy the beauty of nature alone. Have at least one companion with you wherever you go and whatever you are doing outdoors and tell your friends and family where you will be and how long you plan to be gone.

Packing Tips For Camping

Camping is a pretty unique experience. You get to spend time away from the hustle of city life. Do you want to see a spectacular sight? Then sit or lie down under a night sky full of brilliant stars, they seem close enough to reach out and touch them.

Whether you are planning a long or short getaway, you never know what you are going to run into or what you may need. Let me give you some tricks and tips to planning and packing for a trip into the wilderness.

A. First you need to pick an area in your house and put all of your equipment in that area prior to packing. Try to start this process a few days in advance. This way you won’t forget something of major importance.

B. Take a good look at your equipment pile and when you think you have everything laid out, spend some time going over your camping list of things you want to bring and double check it.

C. When you are done packing your equipment, the next step should be getting your clothing together. Your clothes should be layered to compensate for changing temperatures and rain. Always bring spare clothing; you should always be prepared for the unexpected. Try to stay away from cotton as it dries slowly and offers little to no insulation when it gets wet.

D. Test all of your equipment before you head out. Be sure you know how your camp stove works and bring plenty of fuel. Do you lanterns work, is your tent complete?

E. Bring along several nylon bags to store your gear, and don’t forget the water purification tablets and a water bladder in case you are not near a reliable source of drinking source.

F. Plan your meals ahead of time. You want to be sure you have enough food.

All of the above mentioned items are useful; some are luxuries while others are necessities.

Camping With Kids

family campingAs kids become more and more busy camping trips present a great opportunity to spend quality time with your kids without distractions. Kids are more active today than they have been in the past, even needing planners to keep everything straight. While its good for kids to be involved in different activities, there also needs to be some time to relax and be with family and that is where camping comes in.

Camping is a wonderful pastime for families and many kids love it. You may want to start by having the kids help decide the camping location. It’s important to involve the kids with the planning; otherwise it can seem like just another family obligation instead of a chance to really have fun and bond with the rest of the family. You’ll want to be sure to plan well ahead. Camping is becoming increasingly popular and campsites can be booked months and even years in advance. Talk with the kids about what you hope to achieve on the camping trip and make a list of activities to do. Great family camping activities include stargazing, animal watching, hiking, fishing, canoeing, rafting, and of course cooking s’mores.

Before you leave home for your camping trip it is also important to remember to go over basic first aid and safety instructions. There is a lot that can happen on a camping trip and you need to be sure that everyone is prepared. You may also want to do a trial run setting up the tent. You don’t know what the weather will be like at your campsite when you get there and you don’t want there to be any delays in getting shelter up. Planning will be the key to your successful camping trip.

Now, once you get camping the most important thing to remember is to relax and have fun. Things aren’t going to go exactly as planned and that’s part of the fun. Most fun family camping memories are made from unplanned or impromptu moments. It’s also important to make sure you get the whole family involved. Working together to make a successful camping trip will leave you feeling like you spent quality time together. To make the camping trip fun for everyone make sure each child got to pick and plan at least one of the planned activities and everyone participates. This will make each child feel important and will give insight into what that child likes and reveal parts of his personality. Without the presence of friends and other distractions, kids are more likely to pay attention to their parents and this is one of the keys to a camping trip.

This is also a great time for parents to teach their kids life lessons. Camping can even be a time to pass along family history. It’s important to know who your family is and where they came from. Around a campfire at night is a great time to tell stories of older generations of family members.

Camping is a great family tradition and is a great experience for kids. Just make sure that you plan well and are flexible. Kids require flexibility and without it your camping trip is sure to fail. But, if done right, your family camping trip will be a great memory for your child that they will carry forever.

What To Bring On Your Camping Trip

Bringing along the right camping supplies and gear is a vital part of any successful camping trip. The following camping checklist is a general guide for the average family camping weekend. Your camping supply list may differ, depending on the climate, location, and type of camping facilities you are visiting. If you are backpacking, kayak or canoe camping, or enjoying another type of camping where gear weight is crucial, check our lightweight backpacking tips.

Shelter and bedding are two of the most important items on your camping supply list. Primitive camping trips may require nothing more than a tarp to protect you from the ground’s moisture and a good sleeping bag, but your family camping checklist should include 1 or 2 adequately sized tents, tent stakes and extra stakes, and a hammer and stake puller. Ground covers, or tarps slightly larger than the bottom of your tent, are great for protecting your camping tent from moisture and dirt. You may also want to bring along a small broom to keep your tent clean and an outdoor mat for your entrance.

There are many different options for bedding and sleeping gear, but your camping checklist may include air mattresses or camp pads, like the Coleman Rest Easy pad, sleeping bags, and even pillows and blankets. Remember to bring extra blankets and comforters for cool nights, picnics, and play areas. You may also want to include a Coleman shelter to protect your food or just for an escape from the heat.

Clothing is another essential on your camping supply list. The types of clothes you pack will depend, of course, on the weather, as well as the activities you are planning. For a simple weekend trip, pack 3 sets of clothing along with something to sleep in, a jacket or sweatshirt, and rain gear. If you are planning on hiking, you may want long pants and hiking shoes, as well as extra socks. Don’t forget swimsuits, sandals for the pool, beach, or bathhouse, and some sort of hat for head protection. For longer camping trips, make use of the laundry facilities most campgrounds offer and only add 1 or 2 extra sets of clothing to your packing list.

Good hygiene is just as important on your camping trips as it is at home. Review your camping checklist carefully and remember all the toiletries and personal items you will need. If you’re visiting a campground with shower facilities, store your toiletries in easy to carry, waterproof containers. Otherwise, there are a variety of Coleman camp showers available. Remember soap, deodorant, dental care products, hair care, as well as medications and other personal items you may need.

Rubber totes or rugged duffel bags are great for storing and packing your camping gear. Consider packing an individual clothing bag and shower tote for each person to make things simple. For easy locating, store less used items together in separate bags or containers, like rain equipment, swimsuits and towels, camping games, and beach toys. Laundry bags are very useful for keeping dirty clothes separated, as well as for the bathhouse. Don’t forget a bath towel, washcloth or sponge, and a change container with quarters for some showers and laundry facilities.

Choosing A Good Camping Spot

camping tentPlanning on going camping? Great! One of the first things you need to do is choose a spot. Here are several factors you should consider when choosing a camping spot, as well as a few tips for finding a good one.

Accessibility
How are you going to get to your camping spot? Is it a “drive up camping spot” or is access via a foot trail. If access is via a foot trail, I would suggest finding a spot with a half mile or less hike for your first trip.

Views / Attractions
What’s at the camping spot? Does it have good views? No sense going and camping in a boring place when there are many beautiful camping spots available.

Water
Does your camping spot have access to clean water? If not, you’ll have to pack in all of the water you need, including plenty to put out the fire with.

Firewood
Is there access to firewood at the camping spot. If you want a campfire, you don’t want to have to carry in the wood you’ll need! Be sure that you are allowed to harvest firewood for the area you are going. In most areas, you are allowed to pick up dead wood, but not cut down live trees. Live trees do not burn well, anyway.

Campability
If you’re going into “uncharted areas” or plan on camping where there is no established camping spot, be sure that the terrain is such that you can pitch your tent without rolling down a hillside or sleeping on the rocks all night.

Tips for finding a spot
Here are a few places you can start looking for camping spots:
Local state parks
Local national forests
Your local city/county water supply lake
Ask friends who camp
Search online for “camping your state here” etc.

Be safe…and have fun!

RV Camping

Camping with an RV can be particularly enjoyable for any sightseer. Camping by RV has become more widely popular with the start of the baby boomers reaching retirement age. Camping with an RV gives your camping experience a new carefree twist. Just pull into any campsite nationwide, pay your campsite fee and you are almost certain to have a great time. While camping in each area, make sure you discover the exclusive benefits unique to your location.

Most of the places to enjoy camping with your RV are pay sites. Some places are still available with free camping options although these may have little to no amenities. Some of the most common places for camping with an RV are in places with full hookups for electricity and water. It is also common to have a dump site for wastes at these camping locations.

You can easily make a camping experience take you from coast to coast with a new location for camping every night if you wish. It is generally much cheaper to get a camping spot than it would be to stay in a hotel and you have all of the necessities inside your movable home. Most RV’s have a nice awning on one or both sides of the vehicle so that you can spend a good amount of time in the shade even while enjoying a sunny day. When Camping with an RV there is a very good opportunity to take every possible convenience with you as you travel from one camping location to the next campsite.

Some RV camping locations have WiFi internet so that you can wirelessly connect to the internet while camping. While doing so you can look up RV campsite locations in areas you plan to visit in the near future. Most of the camping websites give information on availability and amenities for your visit. While camping at many of the locations across the USA you can find opportunities to go fishing, hike or bike nature trails and even participate in rock climbing. You will be amazed as you look around at your options, because some camping locations will have stores nearby for shopping and others with have horses for trail-riding excursions. It is possible to find some with walking access to swimming holes, and hot pots or artesian water holes for soaking in.

It would seem that you will never run out of new RV camping options. RV camping locations are becoming more popular all the time and with the baby boomer generation continuing to retire it is sure to become a favorite camping option for many more people every day. In response to this demand, the RV camping suppliers are becoming more visible with their mainstream marketing. Even now it is becoming extremely popular for home builders to make a parking area with an RV gate for potential buyers.

Although RV camping requires a much larger upfront cost in order to either buy or rent your RV, it places you in a position to have an almost unlimited amount of camping possibilities!

Winter Camping

winter campingWinter time can be a fun and challenging time for the camping enthusiast. Winter camping provides new experiences and new challenges that you will grow to love. A couple ways to experience camping in the winter is to pack all your warmest down gear, a quality tent and plenty of camping food.

If you are planning to hike into a remote area in the winter then you may enjoy snow shoeing to your camping destination. This provides you with a larger foot surface area to allow for easy walking on top of the snow. Another option is cross-country skiing to your favorite camping spot. This is a favorite of many camping aficionados.

If camping in the winter opposed to camping in the spring, summer or early fall you may see animals with slightly different coats. They will have their winter fur. That way by camping in the winter as well as camping during other seasons you can go to the same spot and the scenery will have changed. Not only will the leafy trees be stripped of all their leaves, but you will see birds that thrive in your camping area during the colder winter months.

To make winter camping more fun you will need to make sure you are able to stay warm. To stay warm while camping in the winter you will want to bring a warm coat, thermal underwear, and wool socks and gloves. It is also a good idea to bring a stocking hat and hand warmers in your camping gear. Inside your tent you can set up a kerosene heater in the middle far away from anything that could ignite. There are also many other types of camping heaters that your camping retailer will be able to tell you about. Sleeping bags for your camping trip are rated for temperature so make sure you bring a sleeping bag that is rated for the temperatures you will experience on your camping adventures.

When you first get up in the morning you may want to pull your clothing into your sleeping bag in order to warm them just a bit before putting them on. Most tents for camping are well ventilated and do not hold in heat for very long. To make your tent hold in the heat a bit longer, you may wish to throw an extra tarp over it and fasten it down with tent pegs designed for camping.

You will find that fewer people end up camping in the winter, so you will most likely find your favorite camping location not only available but also very peaceful and quiet! So if you like camping in peace and quiet with not a lot of other camping enthusiasts coming out to your favorite spots, then choosing to set up your camping area in the winter will work perfect for you. Camping retailers will often have special deals in the slower winter months, so waiting to buy your camping gear until you are ready to go camping will not be a problem for you. So go out this winter and every winter and enjoy the peaceful bliss of nature by camping.